5 Top Family Games to Play

Monopoly - Try the Lisbon version

Monopoly – Try the Lisbon version

This winter huddled by the log fire in Central Portugal with rain pelting down on the hills and windmills outside, we’ve brought out the games.  By games I mean good old board games. Here are a selection we’ve enjoyed most that are suitable for all the family from age 8 upwards chosen from the mountain of board games in our cupboard.  It was difficult to choose just five from the traditional favourites such as Chess, Draughts, Ludo, Snakes and Ladders and Scrabble but the ones picked out below are those that we all enjoy.  So I urge you, bribe the children with marshmallows and hot chocolate, get them off the computer and gather in front of the heater.  Unless you’re in Australia in which case a shady spot in the garden.

In no particular order…

1.  ‘Monopoly’.  Yep, no surprises there.  We have the London version but Jae has also played the Lisbon version at school.  For the very few of you on the planet that haven’t come across Monopoly, it’s a game for 2-4 players.  The aim of the game is to, well, make the most money by buying up property, building houses and hotels and collecting rent.  Takes from around 45 minutes to 2 hours.  We became fairly addicted to this game in the summer, see Take a £10 Fine or Take a Chance!

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2.  ‘Articulate’.  This is definitely for older children but you can relax the rules for younger ones and pick out questions they can do.  You need at least four to play and an even number of people.  One person on a team describes a word that the other person on the team has to guess.  It can take an hour or two to get round the board but is great fun.  It can also be a good test of how your kids are doing on the educational front and any gaps in their knowledge.  I was shocked, yes shocked, to find out Jae hadn’t seen ‘The Wizard of Oz’ when he couldn’t describe it.  How did that happen?

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3. ‘Ingenius’.  This is an easy game to play when you’ve had a busy day as it’s not too taxing on the brain and one that younger children can play too.  Match up the symbols to score points.  Takes about half an hour but you can stretch out the length of the game by using more of the board.  From 2-4 players.  My current favourite, wonder why?

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4.  ‘Dr Who’.  Yes of course there’s a game.  There’s also a groovy electronic tardis, daleks and counters representing Dr Who.  You have to collect 6 cards with each card representing different time zones while trying to avoid being caught by the daleks.  The game takes about an hour.

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5.  ‘Jenga’.  This is made up of wooden bricks and wins extra points for being durable enough to hand down a generation or two.  After building the tower out of rectangular wooden bricks each player has to take turns pulling out a brick without any of the tower collapsing. A game that’s easy to pack if you’re off camping.

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So if its still raining, snowing or too hot to move, that’s next weekend sorted for everyone!

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Amazing make-your-own tree tinsel!

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I love this Christmas tree tinsel alternative which was wrapped around the tree at my daughter’s school.  Each pupil had to knit a square in a different colour.  These were then then joined together to make a very colourful mega scarf to wind round the tree.  It looks fabulous!  Definitely a welcome change from tinsel.

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Guess it can either be added to every year, divided back into scarves or made into blankets and sent off to the needy.

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Alternatively the fourth Dr Who might like it.

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Perfect for under the tree.  Available on Amazon £4.99 or less.

Perfect for under the tree. Available on Amazon £4.99 or less.